File - President Michel Sleiman speaks during a press conference at the Presidential Palace in Baabda, Sunday, Dec. 29, 2013. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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Intensified attempts to break the nine-month Cabinet stalemate have made some progress, a senior March 8 source said Thursday, as Hezbollah stepped up its warning against forming a fait accompli government, saying such a move would scuttle the presidential election in May.Without elaborating, the source cited mediation efforts being made by Speaker Nabih Berri and Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt aimed at promoting a new Cabinet proposal based on an 8-8-8 lineup to avert the possibility of a neutral government still held out by Sleiman as a last option to break the monthslong deadlock.MP Hadi Hobeish, a member of the parliamentary Future bloc, said Sleiman had pledged to approve the formation of a neutral Cabinet if the rival parties failed to agree on an all-embracing government within the next 10 days.However, Berri, Hezbollah and other March 8 parties have warned against forming a fait accompli government, their term for the neutral Cabinet envisaged by Sleiman.
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